Printing Press

Strada, 1845‒1850

Our object, a screw press made of larch wood, was used in the Lower Engadine. For a long time it was considered the oldest printing press in the Alpine regions: it was estimated to be up to 400 years old.

In 2017 a group of experts undertook a dendrochronological examination (dating pieces of wood on the basis of tree rings), which revealed that the press had been built in the 1840s. Thus its most surprising aspect is not so much the device’s old age but rather the fact that such manually operated screw presses remained in use in Graubünden as late as the 19th century, when industrial printing presses had long since become widespread.